Harvesting Sweet Peppers & Planting Cover Crops
Our fall succession of sweet peppers is starting to mature, giving up small yields both last week and this week. This fall we’re growing Bangles, Jimmy Nardello, Shishito, and Banana peppers to round out our mix of sweet peppers. Bangles are a fun new crop as they yield peppers that resemble a miniature bell pepper in shades of red, orange, yellow, and brown. They can be used for snacking, stuffing, or even pickling. Check out the mix below that Farm Educator Nathan harvested while checking on our pepper plants!
As much as we love being able to fill every single bed with food crops, sometimes we have to give back to the soil in the form of planting cover crops. We’d been noticing the last few beds adjacent to our chicken coop were not quite producing on par with the others. Rather than planting them with fall crops, we decided to plant them with a clover cover crop to see if we can improve the soil. Clover is a member of the legume family and as it grows, it has the ability to fix beneficial nitrogen to the soil. It will also attract beneficial insects and work to prevent soil erosion.
The rain last week helped water-in everything we direct-seeded in the beds we’re maintaining with our HVF (High Velocity Farming) cropping system. So far we’ve been able to plant radishes, arugula, lettuce mix, and Hakurei turnips. You can see the tidy and symmetrical rows of arugula popping up in the photo below! Since all of these are quicker maturing crops, our hope is to be able to use these beds to produce high yields and consistent harvests. Weather permitting, we should be able to start making the first harvest from these beds in about a month.